People in Aviation: July 2004

 - December 19, 2007, 2:30 PM

Norwell, Mass.-based Sentient Jet named Steven Hankin as CEO. He joined the company from Starwood Hotel and Resorts Worldwide, where he was chief marketing officer and president of its Starwood Technology and Revenue Systems unit. Hankin replaced Mark Stone, who served as CEO for two years.

Bernd Kowalewski is the new president and CEO of Tulsa, Okla.-based BizJet International. Kowalewski is a 17-year employee of Lufthansa Technik and served on the board of directors of BizJet after Lufthansa Technik acquired the company in 2000.

Robert Brown is the new president and CEO of CAE, the parent company of SimuFlite. Brown, who is currently chairman of Air Canada and was previously president and CEO of Bombardier, on August 11 will succeed Derek Burney, who will serve as vice chairman until his formal retirement on October 31. Also at CAE, Sebastian Caire was named general manager and Juan Fernandez-Trapa head of training for the company’s joint venture with Iberia.

Aircraft Technical Publishers named Gerald Kosbab as president and COO. Kosbab has more than 25 years of experience in client-relationship management, sales, finance and engineering, including stints with EDS, Piper and Cessna. He was previously managing director of EDS.

Messier-Dowty promoted Simon Luxmoore to senior v-p. He succeeded Martyn Hurst, who retired. Luxmoore was v-p of Messier-Dowty’s Boeing and military business unit.

Kris Ganase was promoted to president of ACSS, an L-3 Communications and Thales joint venture. Ganase was executive v-p and COO at the company. Before joining ACSS in February 2001, Ganase held the position of v-p of operations for Thales Avionics Canada.

The ATR assembly of members named Filippo Bagnato as CEO of ATR. He succeeded Jean-Michel Leonard, whose term expired at the end of May. Leonard now serves as chairman of the ATR board of directors. Bagnato was CEO of Eurofighter. The following people were appointed to the ATR management team: John Moore, senior v-p of commercial; Roberto Bellino, senior v-p of customer service; Serge Queille, senior v-p of finance; and Luigi Lombardi, senior v-p of operations.

Jerry Schlesinger was named executive v-p and CFO for NetJets. Based at the company’s operational headquarters in Columbus, Ohio, Schlesinger is responsible for NetJets’ financial and business process matters in North America. He was most recently president and CEO of Aerospace Products International. Schlesinger was also the co-founder of SimuFlite Training International and served as its executive v-p and CFO.

Chesterfield, Mo.-based Thunder Aviation appointed Steve Hojnacki as v-p of operations. Hojnacki joined the company from Timco, where he served as director of maintenance.

Colin Bond was named CFO for Jet Aviation’s worldwide operations, effective August 15. He joins the company from Great Lakes Chemical Corp., where he was v-p of finance. Also at Jet Aviation, Philip Balmer was promoted to senior v-p and general manager for the company’s new Dubai facility, which is expected to open in January. He was director of maintenance at the Singapore location. Eric Jan has been appointed interior design manager at the company’s facility in Basel, Switzerland. He joined the company from Archibald Design, an international design studio specializing in yachts. David Heydt was hired as director of maintenance for Jet Aviation Teterboro, N.J. Most recently Challenger and Global Express program manager for Bombardier, Heydt is overseeing the expansion of the Teterboro operation’s maintenance services.

Flight Options named James Guerin as senior v-p of sales. He was most recently sales director for new business for Gulfstream, where he oversaw the development of sales opportunities in the Midwest. His career has also included executive v-p and chief marketing officer for HeliFlite Services and v-p of sales for Flexjet. Also at Flight Options, Scott Link was named v-p of operations control. Link was most recently general manager of JetBlue.

West Chester, Pa.-based Keystone Helicopter named Ralph Kunz as v-p of maintenance, repair and overhaul services. He joined the company from Acro Aerospace in Richmond, Canada, where he was v-p of marketing and sales.

Ernest Stellings joined the NBAA staff as a general aviation desk specialist at the FAA Air Traffic Control System Command Center in Herndon, Va., where he provides NBAA members with face-to-face representation to the FAA on matters pertaining to the daily operation of the National Airspace System. His most recent position was operations center manager for CitationShares in Greenwich, Conn.

FlightSafety International has announced several promotions. Craig Newell is the new manager of FlightSafety’s Wichita Learjet Learning Center. Newell was most recently the center’s assistant manager. Tony Ossipov was promoted to assistant manager for the Teterboro, N.J. learning center. He was most recently the center’s director of training. Barbara Taylor was promoted to corporate director of customer support. Taylor was most recently the assistant director of standards and customer support. Derek Maeer was promoted to general manager of the simulation systems division. Maeer was previously the director of program management for the division. Ted Grimsley was promoted to assistant manager at the Orlando Learning Center. He was most recently the Orlando center’s director of training.

Hurst, Texas-based Heli-Dyne Systems selected Judy Smith as its new director of sales and marketing. Smith worked at American Eurocopter for 20 years, where she held positions in management, sales, contract administration, marketing and aircraft delivery.

Abbotsford, Canada-based Van Isle Avionics named Philip Haddad as service and technical sales specialist. He joined the company from Western Express Airlines, where he was a purchasing/maintenance planner.

Billy McDonald is the new director of completion/ refurbishment at McKinney Aerospace. McDonald previously worked at K-C Aviation/General Dynamics Aviation Services in Dallas for several years.

Wichita-based Mid-Continent Instruments hired Brett Williams as engineering manager. Williams is researching the development of new products, supervising engineering functions and coordinating project scheduling. Williams worked in process and design engineering at Garmin International.

Suzanne Hawes is the new completions/sales representative at Battle Creek, Mich.-based Duncan Aviation. Hawes joined Duncan Aviation in 1996 as a designer.

Jim Terpstra, Jeppesen’s senior v-p for aviation affairs, retired after 36 years with the company. He held numerous positions at Jeppesen during his career, including authoring pilot-training programs; manager of flight information technical; director of flight information development; and v-p of production and development. Terpstra played an instrumental role in the introduction of NavData as a commercial product, helped ensure the availability of data in common, consistent formats and started the Arinc 424 committee, which develops the industry standard for data formatting. He will continue to work with Jeppesen as an executive consultant.

Oscar Gracia
joined Houston-based Wing Aviation as a regional sales director with responsibilities for the Houston and Latin American markets. Gracia joined Wing Aviation from American Jet International/Million Air Houston.

Les Howell recently retired as director of aviation for the Seminole Tribe in Hollywood, Fla. Howell held the position for three years. Before that he was a test pilot with Gulfstream. Howell is restoring muscle cars for private enjoyment. As a result of Howell’s retirement, Ken Dunn has been promoted to captain of the tribe’s Gulfstream IV. He was a helicopter pilot. Chris McGinley was promoted to chief pilot. He was previously the Gulfstream IV captain.

Burbank, Calif.-based TWC Aviation named Greg Andrews manager of aircraft acquisitions and sales. Andrews was director of marketing at Clay Lacy Aviation.

Steven Schmidt
was promoted to deputy director of NASA’s Flight Research Center in Edwards, Calif. Schmidt was special assistant to the NASA Administrator since 1992.

Montreal Jet Center, a new company specializing in business jet interior refurbishing, avionics upgrades, modifications and maintenance at Montreal Dorval P.E. Trudeau International Airport, named Chris Curley as sales manager of aircraft services. Curley is based in New Jersey and is covering the East Coast.

Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada-based Cascade Aerospace appointed Bret Burnside as director of technical operations. Burnside’s aircraft maintenance career has included senior positions at Air Canada Technical Services, Alaska Airlines and Goodrich Aviation Technical Services.

The Virginia Department of Aviation announced last month that director Charles Macfarlane has left the agency. Macfarlane, who was appointed director in May 2002, resigned to pursue a real-estate career. A new director was not named at press time.

Awards and Honors

The Civil Air Patrol has been named to the 2004 Associations Advance America Honor Roll for its aerospace career exploration programs. The award is sponsored by the American Society of Association Executives and recognizes outstanding accomplishments by nonprofit organizations. CAP was recognized in the public-education category for the growth of its aerospace career exploration camps for cadets.

Executive Jet Management received the FAA’s Diamond Award for aircraft maintenance training excellence for the 11th year in a row. The company earned the award for having more than 25 percent of its maintenance technicians qualify for individual training award in any given year.

Jet Aviation Teterboro, N.J., received the FAA Diamond Award for 2003 for the sixth consecutive year. The award recognizes excellence in both the aircraft maintenance technicians and the repair station. Eighty percent of Jet Aviation Teterboro’s maintenance staff received individual awards.

Sporty’s has awarded two $1,000 aviation exploring scholarships to high-school students Bradley Bormuth and Charles Watson. Both recipients are planning careers in aviation and both students had their first flights as Young Eagles. Bormuth, 16, of Morganton, N.C., is a student pilot with plans to become either an airline or corporate pilot. Watson, 17, of Lebanon, Tenn., is a student pilot who plans to take his private pilot checkride by midsummer. He hopes to become an Air Force pilot.

Final Flights

Richard Heckman, v-p of sales and marketing for Cleveland-based Flight Options, died June 12 from brain cancer. He was 43. Heckman, who served in that position since 1998, was one of the founding officers of the company. His career also included the positions of v-p of sales and marketing for Raytheon Aircraft, where he developed and implemented the Travel Air fractional-ownership program, and v-p of sales and marketing at Stevens Aviation.

Rex Hardy, founding editor of Callback, a monthly safety bulletin from NASA’s aviation safety reporting system, died April 7 in Monterey, Calif. He was 88. Hardy, a former naval aviator, test pilot for Northrop Aviation and chief pilot at Lockheed, published the first issue of Callback in 1979.